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Pressure and Stress in the Workplace; A Vital Distinction

Posted: 12th May 2017

Trying to distinguish workplace stress from the pressures of work can be a little stressful.

Some people say that a certain amount of stress is a necessary, as without it we would lack the motivation or drive needed to do our job effectively. This leads to stress being seen in terms of good (necessary) or bad (excessive), and therein lies a wee problem.

CaptureThe Stress Response puts us in a highly-charged state, in preparation for fighting or fleeing. This is highly useful if we are faced with a genuine threat to our safety, security or life.

But in the modern workplace, employers want staff to communicate effectively, work well with colleagues, plan and prioritise, problem-solve, show flexibility, think on their feet when needed, all the while maintaining certain standards of work.

Just the right amount of pressure to do our jobs well usually does the trick. If it doesn’t there may be a performance issue or another problem entirely.
Either way, there really are no benefits to be had from stress at work.

So why do so many managers not prioritise stress and ultimately, staff welfare?


Business Comment

Business Comment is the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce’s bi-monthly magazine. It provides insight on Edinburgh’s vibrant business community, with features on the city’s key sectors, interviews with leading figures and news on new business developments in the capital.
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